Archive for Thursday, March 15, 2018

Letter to the editor: Health, safety threat

March 15, 2018

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To the editor:

The League of Women Voters believes that the proliferation of handguns and semi-automatic assault weapons in the United States is a major health and safety threat to its citizens. We support strong federal measures to limit the accessibility and regulate the ownership of these weapons by private citizens and the regulation of firearms for consumer safety.

We support licensing procedures for gun ownership by private citizens to include a waiting period for background checks, personal identity verification, gun safety education and annual license renewal.

The League supports enforcement of strict penalties for the improper possession of and crimes committed with handguns and assault weapons, and allocation of resources to better regulate and monitor gun dealers.

This position has been studied by our members across the country and updated twice since it was adopted 27 years ago. We have supported legislation to extend the Assault Weapons Ban, which expired in 2004. We support closing the Gun Show Loophole to require all gun show dealers to run criminal background checks. The League has also opposed congressional attempts to repeal a specific locality’s gun safety laws (eg. Washington, D.C.), because such action interferes with citizens’ right to self-government.

Comments

Shirley Domer 2 months, 1 week ago

Thanks to the League for voicing this rational stand, which I fully support. Alarmist will say, "They want to take away your guns." This is far from true. The League simply wants gun use to be regulated, just as owning and driving a car is regulated or as prescription drugs are.

Bob Smith 2 months, 1 week ago

".... This is far from true..." Nope. Banning modern sporting rifles would be like letting the camel get his nose inside the tent. The gun grabbers would then declare the next evil thing to be banned and so on and so on.

Brock Masters 2 months, 1 week ago

From the group that opposes voter ID. No credibility plus most of what they are requesting is in place. They just show they ignorance when they demand a waiting period for background checks - people must wait for the background check already when buying from a licensed dealer. And this bit of stupidity : “We support closing the Gun Show Loophole to require all gun show dealers to run criminal background checks.” Dealers must be licensed and conduct background checks even at gun shows.

Educate yourselves before speaking.

Cille King 2 months, 1 week ago

Brock, have the laws changed? "

Kansas has no laws expressly regulating gun shows. Sales of collectibles, including guns, are exempt from state laws requiring the licensing of transient merchants in each county where the merchant does business.1 A “transient merchant” is any person who engages in, does or transacts any temporary or transient business in the state, either in one locality or in traveling from place to place in the state, and includes merchants who, for the purpose of carrying on such business, hire, lease, use or occupy any building, structure, motor vehicle, railroad car or real estate.2" http://lawcenter.giffords.org/gun-shows-in-kansas/

Brock Masters 2 months, 1 week ago

Cillie federal law regulates the sale of firearms even in Kansas.

Federal law requires firearm dealers - those in the business of selling firearms to be licensed and to conduct background checks for each sale even at gun shows.

Where there is room for improvement is enforcement of who is not licensed but acting as a dealer.

Cille King 2 months, 1 week ago

Brock, the League of Women Voters does not oppose voter ID. They do oppose restrictive ID requirements that are barriers to voting by underserved populations. If a person doesn't drive, doesn't go to a public school/university, or work for a government agency, they most likely would not have a government issued photo ID - the current Kansas requirement for voting. Several states also allow other forms of ID or a signed affidavit that the person is who they say they are.

Brock Masters 2 months, 1 week ago

Thanks for the clarification.

I do understand the need for a valid ID is more important for gun purchases than voting although I do support the government ID.

My big issue is the inconsistency in arguments. People will argue that a poor person having to obtain a birth certificate at a cost of $25 disenfranchises them but some of these same people actively advocate for gun control measures that cost hundreds of dollars without being concerned about the impact on the poor and their right to exercise their right.

The biggest problem is often we don’t look for solutions but for political wins. There are compromises that can protect voting integrity without disenfranchising people and there are measures that can be taken to provide for a safer society without infringing upon the 2nd amendment.

We just need to talk and listen.

David Reynolds 2 months ago

I always find it interesting that those supporting gun control never mention abortion control.

Two of the most hotly debated topics today are gun rights & abortion.

Since Roe v Wade, 1973, there have been over 60 million abortions in America. Since 1968 there have been 1.5 million gun deaths, & in all wars since 1775-2017, 1.2 million deaths, for a total of about 2.75 million deaths from guns in all forms. That is about 21.8 abortions per every type of gun death, & 40 abortions per non-war gun death.

https://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/las-vegas-shooting/more-americans-killed-guns-1968-all-u-s-wars-combined-n807156

http://www.numberofabortions.com

The current populations of the states of New York & California combined is approximately 59.4 million. Thus, since Roe the USA abortion industry has wiped out the equivalent of the entire population of two of our most populated states.

One must ask, with those statistics, why only the cry, by the writer to control guns, and not to control the instruments of abortion?

From a medical & legal perspective, the definition of human death can be summarized as follows. Medically there is no brainwave activity & deprivation of oxygen to the brain via blood flow for a period of time leading to brain death. Legally, the courts generally have ruled death as no heartbeat for a period of time leading to multiple organ failures. Scientifically death is described based on the combination of brain, heart, & multiple organ failure. In summary, death is defined as no heartbeat or brain activity for a period of time & multiple organ failures.

Logically, the reverse of these situations must define the presence of life. The AMA & others agree that 10-12 days following conception there is a heartbeat, & within 12-14 days there is blood flow to a primitive brain and the brain is active…Life is present! There is the potential for a very productive & societal contributing life. Thus, life is present in the womb probably before the women misses her cycle.

If there truly is a concern for life, & given the above facts, how can there not be an equal call for a ban on the instruments of abortion?

The argument for abortion being protected under the Roe ruling by SCOTUS, is equally offset buy the 2nd amendment.

Now I agree any form of needless death is the ultimate tragedy.

Assuming there is real compassion by the writers of the above article, any reasonable person must ask, "How can there be a call for any further type of gun control, without asking why these same folks don't call for equal controls on the restrictions of the instruments used in abortions?

Cille King 2 months ago

Most of us who support a woman's right to determine her reproduction, her right to choose what is best for her and her family, also support a science-base sex education in schools and available birth control - so that abortions are rare, safe, and affordable.

Most pro-birth supporters, seem to have no interest in the child after it is born. The current administration in Kansas and federally, are intent on removing health care, child care, food, housing, education, and rights from those who are struggling to survive. Most abortions are for women who are low income, and many already have children. Why do you want to force these women to carry a fetus to term, that they know they can't provide for, and might cause them physical harm or death? The US has one of the highest rates of death for pregnancy/delivery for developed countries.

Bob Summers 2 months ago

Liberals will do and say anything to limit other peoples freedoms.

The 2nd amendment was drafted to thwart the bullying ideology of the congenital Liberal.

David Reynolds 2 months ago

Let’s be clear about one thing, being married for 60 years, with children & grandchildren I am all about the availability of women’s healthcare, and healthcare availability for everyone.

That said Cilie, the efforts to educate & prevent abortions are laudable, but seem to be relatively ineffective. Since Roe, Planned Parenthood went from almost "0" abortions in 1973 to about 371,000 last year & 7.6 million since Roe. Planned Parenthood alone has aborted more babies than all US citizens killed in all wars since 1775 (1.2 million) by a factor of 6.33 abortions per war death, and 5 abortions per non-war gun death.

One must ask why these preventive efforts aren't working & also recognize that, by any measure, abortions are taking more lives than guns, including all our wars since 1775. So, if there is a concern about gun deaths, there must be extreme concern for on demand abortion.

If one is to prevent the “unintended pregnancy”, I believe the supporters of abortion rights are putting more attention on those rights rather than addressing the socio-economic issues surrounding unwanted pregnancies which lead to abortion. Example, where is the campaign for training & jobs, and revisiting some of the President Johnson’s era “Great Society” programs that force fathers out of homes so the mothers rely on government subsidies which only exacerbate poverty. If the abortion rights folks were really interested in stopping unwanted pregnancies then why aren’t they howling about the educational system which uses a process of “passing students along” without achievement at grade level, thus creating the very socio-economic problems leading to unwanted pregnancies & thus the high demand for abortions.

Additionally, where possible, precious lives could be saved by putting a greater emphasis on adoption. Many couples, who can’t have children, are eager to adopt a baby, and do so overseas. This is something where Planned Parenthood fails where they only made 3,889 adoption referrals last year, thats about 95 abortions per referral.

Regarding the issues, you mentioned “…rights from those struggling to survive”, wouldn’t it be more productive to be front and center to correct the issues I mentioned above to start eliminating the need to “struggle to survive”? It is a large issue but given the proper communications, I believe both sides, of the abortion issue, would support the elimination of the root causes of the socio-economic issues leading to unwanted pregnancies & on demand abortion. In so doing you would help to eliminate the requirement for the instruments of abortion.

Cille King 2 months ago

Even before Planned Parenthood, women had abortions. Women have always had abortions, and will always have abortions. The law that made abortion legal, made it safe for women - no more coat hangers, people claiming to be doctors who put women's lives at risk - no more fatal infections.

Providing education and birth control is effective. Colorado just finished a several year experiment in providing free birth control, and the abortion rate was half of what it was before.

And regarding adoption - there are thousands of children in foster care - many born to parents who couldn't provide for them. Many who have been neglected or abused, who are waiting for adoption.

Yes, education, job training, mental and physical health services would all help families stay intact. Unfortunately, Kansas and the federal government have cut taxes on the wealthy, and thus cut programs for education, job training, and health services. The spread between the super rich and everyone else keeps growing - especially helped with the recent GOP tax cuts.

Bob Summers 2 months ago

This is back before the congenital Liberal taught children "safe-space" technologies in their government inculcation centers.

https://youtu.be/aMqd5EQXD-g

David Reynolds 2 months ago

Cilie, there is always an excuse for not doing things. That's the easy way out.

The problem we see with your responses & this letter is a lack of willingness to admit the equivalence of 60 million humans have been aborted in the last 43-44 years at the hands of these silent acts, with the deaths by guns. Does the method of death really matter?

Until we are willing to admit this moral equivalence, and act on it, there is no solution.

So, all the quests to limit access to guns, will also be met with quests to narrow access to abortions.

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